Wednesday, February 8, 2017

February Vision Portrait


February's Vision Portrait started with an image I already had. I was leading a class and needed a new portrait and this one seemed like a good fit. 


I started out with some chalk pastels on the face and then added some oil pastel flames on the forehead. Then I moved onto magazines for collage. 

The class I was leading was a shortened class and only had 40 minutes of art time. The above picture is what I completed at the end of that class. 



Here is another progress shot. Adding more and more color and texture was so fun and the time seemed to fly by.



I couldn't stop. Eventually I was left with just my eyes and a riot of bursting color. So fun!



Here is a little close up of the hot side. So much goodness going on. 


And here is a close up of the cool side. 

I am loving these Vision Portraits. 


Wednesday, February 1, 2017

January Witness


One of the things I learned through taking the Facilitator Training at Open Studio Project is to do an overall witness to a group of work you do. When we spend a weekend at the studio we put all of our work together and witness it as a whole. It is amazing how even things that don't seem to go together weave themselves into a powerful story.

I have decided to incorporate this practice into my work at home. As I complete a piece I tape it up onto a blank wall in my home and continually add to it. At the end of the month I can witness it all and then take it down and start fresh.

I always start with an intention and this month's intention was:

I see who I am through my art and I use what I learn to improve my life. 


I look at what is there. I write my impressions, what I learned, and what I need to learn. I ask questions and scribble the answers.

Here is some of what I learned:

  • Finger painting is fun
  • I love oil pastels more than I ever thought I could
  • Playing is fun
  • I love color
  • Perfect is overrated 
  • Darkness isn't always bad and sometimes you have to go through the dark to get to the light
  • The journey is better than the destination
  • I always get what I need
  • When I am fueled by self love and worthiness I make wise choices in my life. 
  • I love my life and my family






Wednesday, January 25, 2017

January Painting Journey


My favorite kind of painting is Intuitive Painting. I love to start with no idea where I am going or what I am doing. Just playing around with colors and and seeing what emerges. 


It's especially fun when you add some of your own custom made stamps. 


It always amazes me how something can start out one way and take such a dramatic shift. 


When I am painting I am tapped into my emotions and if something starts to feel a bit constrictive I want to stay very present to that feeling and let it amplify and move through me.


Zooming in you can see a lot of scratching and etching into the paint at this layer. This was in reaction to the strong emotions I had. I spent a lot of time at this layer allowing it all to come through and out.



And then there was something more. I saw a face and I knew it needed to come through. Gently, slowly I brought her forward 


At each step I asked what it was she needed and I kept listening and adding 


In the end it was begging for light and play. Fun little flowers, dashes of color and a whole lot of light heartedness. 

When I work in this way I never know what I am going to get but I always get what I need. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

A Year of Vision Portraits


I love it when I am working on something and I get into the flow. It feels so good to have the energy rushing and things that come together effortlessly. That is why I love Freedom Art so much. It isn't about making something that has to look a certain way. It is about expressing yourself, playing and having fun. 



That is what I am doing with my new Vision Portraits. I took a picture of myself, turned it black and white and blew it up to 18" x 24" and then let loose on it with collage, chalk markers and chalk pastels. It was so much fun and the coolest thing about it is that it really ended up feeling like a bit of a vision board for where I was at that point in my life. 

The interesting twist is to use your own image as the canvas. OMG, at first I thought I might die. I did not enjoy looking at myself blown up to that size and yet I know that there is so much healing to be done around my own ideas of self worth and self acceptance through facing myself in this way. 

The amazing thing is that once I got started I almost forgot I was working on...well me. LOL. I had such a blast and go so many great insights that I decided to keep going and make more. One for each month of the year is my goal. This one is January's. 



Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Art Relieves Stress Even if you Suck at it!


Recently one of my online friends sent me an article about how making art reduces stress even if you suck at it. I love that she sent that to me because it is the exact message I want to send out with the kind of art I do. 

What I do and what I teach isn't about "what" you make. It is about the fun and joy of just stepping into creative flow and playing with art supplies. 

And I know so many of you are thinking, "I suck and art! I can't do it!  What if it looks bad?" Well let me tell you...I have those thoughts every time I start making anything. Those feelings aren't reserved for only some people...everyone has either had those feelings or has them. It is not at all unique and doesn't determine your ability to explore your creativity. 

I personally believe that everyone is creative and that everyone deserves to explore their creativity. Think back to the cavemen. They weren't worried about how their horse was going to look, they just knew they had to carve that shape out onto the cave wall. Our creativity goes back eons and that urge is still in everyone. It is only fear that holds us back. 

The difference between you and me is that I say, "Screw it! I am doing it anyway!" Half the time I am in the middle of what I am making and I am hating it and I just wonder, "Well, what can I do to make it worse?" or "If this feeling had a color what would it be?" and I go with it and sometimes it looks worse and sometimes magic happens and it looks great. I have to remind myself that it is just paint and paper and it's not that serious!



The thing is that when I am following my truth and doing what my intuition tells me I don't really care what it looks like in the end. It can look pretty crappy and I am still in love with it because it came from deep inside me and it felt so good to let it out. 

I'm going to be honest, I've been in a bit of a funk the last week or so...I haven't wanted to do anything much less create but I've been forcing myself to doodle and play and I know for sure that it helps. I feel better when I allow myself to be creative and science is beginning to tell us that it is true! Creativity can lift your mood, release stress and make you feel good. 

Now, I would love for you to come over and make some art with me but you can do it right now in your own home. Get out some markers or crayons or just a pen and start doodling. Remind yourself that you can just toss the paper away when you are done so consider it a chance to just be free and have a little fun.



Of course it's always more fun to do it with a group so check out the upcoming Freedom Art Intro and come join me! 


xo

Art Relieves Stress Even if you Suck at it!


Recently one of my online friends sent me an article about how making art reduces stress even if you suck at it. I love that she sent that to me because it is the exact message I want to send out with the kind of art I do. 

What I do and what I teach isn't about "what" you make. It is about the fun and joy of just stepping into creative flow and playing with art supplies. 

And I know so many of you are thinking, "I suck and art! I can't do it!  What if it looks bad?" Well let me tell you...I have those thoughts every time I start making anything. Those feelings aren't reserved for only some people...everyone has either had those feelings or has them. It is not at all unique and doesn't determine your ability to explore your creativity. 

I personally believe that everyone is creative and that everyone deserves to explore their creativity. Think back to the cavemen. They weren't worried about how their horse was going to look, they just knew they had to carve that shape out onto the cave wall. Our creativity goes back eons and that urge is still in everyone. It is only fear that holds us back. 

The difference between you and me is that I say, "Screw it! I am doing it anyway!" Half the time I am in the middle of what I am making and I am hating it and I just wonder, "Well, what can I do to make it worse?" or "If this feeling had a color what would it be?" and I go with it and sometimes it looks worse and sometimes magic happens and it looks great. I have to remind myself that it is just paint and paper and it's not that serious!



The thing is that when I am following my truth and doing what my intuition tells me I don't really care what it looks like in the end. It can look pretty crappy and I am still in love with it because it came from deep inside me and it felt so good to let it out. 

I'm going to be honest, I've been in a bit of a funk the last week or so...I haven't wanted to do anything much less create but I've been forcing myself to doodle and play and I know for sure that it helps. I feel better when I allow myself to be creative and science is beginning to tell us that it is true! Creativity can lift your mood, release stress and make you feel good. 

Now, I would love for you to come over and make some art with me but you can do it right now in your own home. Get out some markers or crayons or just a pen and start doodling. Remind yourself that you can just toss the paper away when you are done so consider it a chance to just be free and have a little fun.



Of course it's always more fun to do it with a group so check out the upcoming Freedom Art Intro and come join me! 


xo

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Doodle Your Day Away


I love to doodle. I have always doodled. Whenever there is a pen and scrap piece of paper I am doodling. It's just who I am. 

So when my friend was asking me about how to doodle I wasn't exactly sure what to say. How do you explain something that is just part of who you are?

She started asking questions about what pens or markers I use and how I know what to doodle. I decided that I would do a livestream on my Facebook Page all about doodling. Go on over there and check it out. 

Of course once I started that doodle I couldn't stop so I spent the rest of the afternoon finishing it. I paid attention to some of the things I was doing and thought I could go into a little more detail here. 



If you look at the top image you can see the very beginning stages of my leaf doodle. I was using some different colors in the background and it looks a bit messy. In the bottom photo I added a third color that kind of blended the two and added some depth and then added some little dashes all around to make the background look very deliberate. It feels a bit more cohesive to me even with all the crazy little detail.

Speaking of detail. If you look at the leaves themselves, you will notice that the bottom image has a lot more detail. I added dots, dashes and lines in a silver pen that really makes them pop.

You will also notice that the outline of the leaves is far from perfect. Making that outline a bit off center really gives it a casual look. I could have upped this even more by varying the size of that line. 


When you can manipulate the negative space and create shapes with the white paper you can get an interesting look. Add some lines and dots and everything pops and looks fun. 


Using different sized lines can really add interest to the page too. You can see the lines in the purple ripple starting very thick and getting thinner and thinner as they move up. There is also a variance in line thickness in the yellow section as well. 

This is a good spot to point out that there is no need for perfection in doodles. Wonky lines and imperfect circles add to the fun of the it. Leaving spots of white shining through can give it a fun, three dimensional feel instead of just being boring and flat so let go of any desire to be perfect and just have fun!



Using several colors in the same family will add a lot of depth to your doodles. In the leafy stem section there are at least 3 different shades of green mixed together to give it a nice feel. 

The truth is, you cannot go wrong with your doodles. Grab some markers and just start having a little fun. Experiment and play with different color combinations. You might just surprise yourself.